The way the season was looking, with Celtic refusing to just put everyone out of their misery and win the title already, Graeme Murty’s prospects of getting the Rangers job permanently seemed to depend on the outcome of Old Firm clashes.
Then he failed once, and embarked on a turgid run which seems to have killed his chances off permanently, regardless of how the semi-final goes.
Murty is clearly a nice guy, and no Rangers fan will have anything other than affection for the man. But his actions and results are increasingly resembling that of his appearance of a bewildered supply teacher. The last few games have essentially confirmed that keeping him on into next season is a complete non-starter.
The usual argument against sacking a manager who is clearly out of his depth goes along the lines of ‘well, who can we get instead?’ This is asinine. If the incumbent manager needs to go, he needs to go. There is no purpose in keeping him on and guaranteeing failure just because Pep Guardiola hasn’t fired his CV over and started looking at flats in Hyndland.
Yes, Alan Pardew is available, which should terrify us all, the domestic option of Steve Clarke is drab, and the foreign/former player route of Frank de Boer was a disaster in his previous two appointments. We get that. But it’s clear that something needs to be done.
From fans and media alike, the constant talk is that the board ‘HAVE to get the next managerial appointment right.’ This is true. The only problem is, it’s also incredibly difficult to predict with any accuracy who the right option is in the absence of any clearly qualified candidates. We need a new manager, but we should be prepared for the possibility that the odds are against us finding the next Walter Smith.
Maybe discipline, organisation and astute squad management will be enough. Mere competence would’ve gone a lot further than anyone expected this season, but our stocks have remained low. The bad news is we’re unlikely to find a highly talented, inspiring manager to fashion a team that greatly outperforms its abilities, and it’s time we faced reality in accepting that.
The good news is that we don’t need one of those to beat Kilmarnock and Motherwell. And if we can get that right, we’re never going to be very far away. Not humiliating ourselves on a regular basis this season would’ve seen us challenging for the title. There will be plenty of CVs in Dave King’s inbox that can perform the task.